July 19, 2016
Maine’s grassy, rocky pastures have supported dairy herds for centuries, contributing to a long history of dairy farming. In recent decades, however, Maine has been losing dairies at a steady pace. Since dairy is largely considered the backbone of agriculture infrastructure, the loss of dairy farming can be devastating to agriculture as a whole. Despite this challenging economic reality, bright spots dot the landscape. Bo’Lait Farm is one of them—a ray of hope to a sector in decline – illustrating the future of dairy and agriculture in our rural Northeastern state.
In launching Bo’Lait, Conor and Alexis Macdonald are bringing life back to a farm that had been out of operation since the mid-1970s. With extensive farming and animal husbandry experience, they represent the next generation of organic dairy farmers building viable, profitable farm businesses, and continually striving to adopt best herd health and pasture management practices.
“CEI worked with us through the loan process, developing everything that goes into that. There were a lot of roadblocks, but they stuck with us the entire time – we didn’t quit, and they didn’t quit either. People stop by and they love seeing the cows out in the pasture, and they love seeing us milk the cows. There used to be four or five dairy farms here 30 years ago, and until we got here, there were no dairy farms, so it’s something that’s vanishing in the landscape in Maine. People are excited to see it coming back.”
–Conor Macdonald, Co-owner, Bo’Lait Farm
Certified as an organic dairy by Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (MOFGA), Bo’Lait sells milk to Organic Valley, the leading source of organic milk in the nation.